Good things to read.
Ender’s Game. I consider this to be gateway science fiction; the kind of book that is accessible enough for those who couldn’t care less about lasers or spaceships, but can relate to great characters, feeling like an outcast, and striving to be the best.
Sex At Dawn. An excellent exploration of the roots of human sexuality and relationships, including a lot of stuff that will be uncomfortable to hear, though potentially encouraging for those who feel out of place in the typical marriage track.
Guns, Germs, and Steel. A book with a few problems (easily found with some Google searching), but that paints an amazingly detailed picture of why some civilizations had advantages over others. Was somewhat perspective-shaking for me, and I look forward to things that rattle my foundations, as that’s where you find growth and positive change.
Good things to watch
The Newsroom. It’s incredibly idealistic and characters sometimes present monologues that would be out of place in real life, but the wit is quick and characters are hilarious. I wish the real world of journalism had more of this kind of idealism.
Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. One of my favorite movies, the (supposedly true) story of an unpleasant human being turned successful businessperson turned celebrity turned CIA assassin. Lots of famous people involved, and directed by George Clooney, believe it or not. Beautiful cinematography and great story.
Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. A modern classic, in my mind. A musical made for the internet by some clever folks in LA during a writer’s strike, showing that good work could be made on a small budget and in non-traditional formats. Arguably the work that brought a few celebrities back from the dead and got a few more started on the fast-track. Damnably funny and heartbreaking.
Good things to use.
Scrivener. Has saved me more time and money than I care to try and compute. Intuitive and polished. I’ve told so many people to buy this program that I should be working for Literature and Latte (the small company that built it).
Grid-It. Made by a company called Coccoon, the Grid-It is the only reason my carry-on bag isn’t a tide of tangled cords, chargers, and other gadgetry. Brings order to chaos, smiles to faces.
Uniball Jetstream 101 Pens. I’m a recent convert to these from Pilot G2 Minis, which were my former favorite because of their clean lines and small size. The Jetstream is better for lefties like me, though, because of how quickly it dries, and the lines are just as crisp and clean as the G2. If they make a mini version of these, I’m done for.
Connect with Colin on Twitter, @ColinIsMyName.